What is the relationship between the Sisters Rural Advisory and SOS?
The Sisters Rural Advisory was formed in September 2016 and subsequently registered as a legal corporation. Its purpose is to provide a voice for the hundreds of residents in the greater Sisters area who do not live within the Sisters city limits and who are interested in protecting qualities that make Sisters country a uniquely attractive area for residents and visitors alike.
SOS came about in the summer of 2016 in response to concerns over negative noise impacts that resulted from the introduction of a skydive operation at the Sisters Eagle Airport. An initial gathering of 35 concerned individuals chose "Save Our Skies" as a working name for their efforts to curb or mitigate these negative noise impacts. A newsletter was developed and several larger meetings were held for concerned residents whose numbers continued to grow, entirely through word of mouth, to include more than 170 subscribers to the newsletter.
SOS was adopted as an initiative by the 10-member steering committee of the Sisters Rural Advisory. SOS continues as an adjunct under the umbrella organization, Sisters Rural Advisory.
The focus of SOS remains on mitigation of airport noise impacts, especially as generated by commercial recreational aeronautic activities at the Sisters Eagle Airport. However, the name "Save Our Skies" is being replaced with the less alarmist "Skies Over Sisters."
On March 13, Pat Kearney, Karen Hulbert and Bruce Mason met with Sisters Airport for a second time to discuss noise abatement issues. Much of the meeting was devoted to answering the concerns and questions that subscribers to Sisters Rural Advisory/SOS submitted after our email of March 3. Thanks for your input!
1. Skydiving is not returning.
2. Any future airport development will occur within current property boundaries. No expansion of footprint or zone planned.
3. Helicopter activity is not expected to increase. Occasional visits by the small green choppers will continue similar to previous years. Helicopter tourist flights will occur on July 4.
4. Pilots who fly low over residential areas continue to be an issue for both the airport and residents. Additional information as to where residential areas are located will be added to the 4’ x 8’ informational sign at the airport, and added to their website to educate pilots in an attempt to mitigate this issue.
5. The Fourth of July airport event will be similar to previous years, with noise, numerous visiting planes, car drag races and helicopter tourist flights.
6. No major fly-ins or other events on the calendar at this time. There is a possibility of a fly-in in September. The Airport will keep us informed about new upcoming events.
7. Outlaw Aviation now has 2 planes, and additional students interested in the program. A mitigating factor to this increase is the Flight Simulator that Outlaw Aviation now owns. It means that students needs fewer “in plane” hours, so even with more students in the program, a significant increase in flights is not expected.
8. The airport is now aware of the dates of Deschutes Land Trust birding events in the Indian Ford meadow area. They will post the dates on the airports website to help minimize conflict.
Sisters Rural Advisory will continue to participate in meetings with Sisters Airport several times a year, or as needed.
Steering Committee Invites New Members
The departure of Skydive Awesome has resulted in both quieter skies, and significantly less time commitment for steering committee members. Instead of frequent meetings and research chores, we are now down to meeting just a few times a year. Much has been accomplished and the hard work has been done. Steering committee responsibilities in the coming year will primarily be monitoring and communication. You are invited to help out by contacting: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sisters Country Visioning Project
Residents and visitors will have several opportunities in the coming months to participate in the visioning project undertaken by the City of Sisters and Deschutes County. Input is being sought from residents of the Sisters area as well as from visitors. Details on how you can weigh in will be available at the official website www.sistershorizons.org where an online survey will be posted in the near future. Don’t miss this chance to put in your vote for the qualities you most value about living in Sisters Country as well as your ideas for protecting those qualities in the future.
SOS, now called Skies Over Sisters ,operates under the legal entity of The Sisters Rural Advisory. Our website is www.SistersRuralAdvisory.com.
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR AIRPORT NOISE?
"Airports are responsible for their noise impact on the communities they occupy. These noise impacts include noise from arrivals and departures, as well as noise from aircraft in a flight path within the immediate vicinity of the airport." Per the Federal Aviation Administration
WHO CAN RESTRICT SKYDIVING AND OTHER NOISE IMPACTING USES OF THE AIRPORT?
According to OAR 660-013-0100(g), Aeronautic Recreational Aeronautical Activities are allowed with certain limitations and conditions and are subject to approval of airport sponsor.